Ubuntu is considered by many to be as simple as it gets, thanks to GUI installers. For the majority of cases, 98% of the top user experience is from right out of the box for default users. However, there’s a 2% of newer Ubuntu users who have experienced top mistakes. This article aims to give advice about what the top Ubuntu mistakes are and how you can avoid them.
Software and Update Mistakes
As soon as you update or change some root level core elements when it comes to the installation of Linux, you’re naturally introducing a potential for mistakes. That’s the reality. However, the likelihood that your Ubuntu installation will be negatively affected during your package updating is quite low. It’s worth mentioning though that depending on the packages you’re updating, you could be greatly increasing your potential chances of getting an error.
You’ll have to balance keeping your Ubuntu install in harmony with the latest security updates so you should be changing your settings to get Important Security Updates automatically enabled to install. Therefore, if you’re a new Ubuntu user and you want to be sure you don’t ever get errors on that PC, you should only be making updates to the security program. By sticking to the recommended updates, you’re greatly limiting your chances of messing something up.
PPA Repositories, Snaps and Deb Packages
There are a lot of repositories on Ubuntu, from the default ones to the more personal repositories known as the PPAs (Personal Software Archives). These PPAs have a great function which allows the users to install software that doesn’t automatically come in the default setting. PPAs also help you install software titles that aren’t yet in the Ubuntu repositories, and it's a great tool, but it has the potential to break something. Although a break in PPA Ubuntu is rare, the trickier aspect is that it doesn’t get looked at before it gets installed.
All this to say, PPAs don’t need to be avoided but you need to put a lot of thought and consideration before using them. In reality, Ubuntu Snaps will probably start to take the place of PPAs in coming years because Snaps are much easier to put together.
When you’re seeking help from Ubuntu, forums, IRC, or even at AskUbuntu, you need to provide all the critical information or you’ll make your life more complicated. If you mention something simple like one thing that isn’t working, it’s not good enough. You need to give specific information that can help the other party give you the proper diagnosis and treatment options. When you ask for help for Ubuntu, include the distro name, version and the update status, your hardware details, changes made so far, and more.
Getting the Right Hardware
When you ask for help, you also need to think about the right hardware. You should write down certain queries from the command line and you can get the right details for all of the issues about hardware that you might run into. In short, if you just submit vague questions to the help center, it won’t be helpful to anyone and it would be extremely surprising if you got some helpful solutions from that. By giving the right details to the person you’re seeking help to, you’re greatly increasing your chances of success. You can check out this best hardware firewall review and buyers guide in 2020.
Backups and Using Common Sense
Perhaps the top mistake of all, is the Linux users (whether on Ubuntu or not) who make the mistake of not running backups of their data. When they back up the key contents of the home directory, it becomes really easy to restore everything if an issue occurs. However, when there’s no backup, recovering data after an error is an extremely painful, sometimes impossible process. At the end of the day, a lot of it comes down to using common sense.
So, whether you’ve experienced some of these mistakes yourself or you have tips of your own that you use to avoid these top mistakes, it’s important to always have your finger on the pulse of what can go wrong. It’s much better to be prepared, and it might save you hours of frustration down the road.
Ellie Coverdale is a technical writer who works for Academized and shares her tech tips with her readers. She enjoys finding bugs and issues with certain software and hardware and outlining solutions to her readers. In her spare time, she is a big fan of puzzles and brain twisters, which she also develops.